Prague is beautiful, I would have happily stayed in Prague for a month at least. We arrived by train from Berlin, the scenery was amazing as we rolled through mountains and along the river. A lost in translation moment when booking meant that we didn’t have a private carriage this time but that meant we got to laugh at the other Australians onboard who booked their ticket for the wrong day just like we did from Paris to Amsterdam.
Our apartment, located in the old town, was so impressive. The location meant we could walk everywhere, it was on the top floor so very quiet (although getting 3 kids and a pram up and down was fun!) and by far the cleanest place we have stayed in. The owner had a robotic vacuum cleaner plus 2 others – you can imagine how thrilled he was at first when he saw the kids. My favourite parts of this place though were the amazing coffee machine and the most definitely amazing spa bath complete with disco lights.
The highlight of Prague was the walk up to Prague Castle across Charles Bridge, which I was very happy we did early in the morning because by lunch time it is very crowded. The grounds to the castle are huge with amazing views over Prague so we didn’t bother paying to go inside the buildings. Prague is keen on the pay to use the toilet thing, most of Europe is, but they take it to the next level in some places with the cost depending on what you are depositing.
Everything you read about Prague says you will be ripped off at some point either by a taxi driver or some other scam. We found the legit taxi drivers to be very nice, the dodgy ones were easy to spot by the fact their cars never seemed to be able to come to a complete stop. The driver would just kind of jump out and let the car roll to the kerb, then it would often roll back just as someone was putting their luggage in. We did fall for the Halusky trick, where you pay by the weight of the food, which annoyed me because I’d read up on it.
Our first flight since landing in London, it was surprisingly easy and straightforward flying from Prague to Rome. The flight was delayed and our bags didn’t come out in Rome for about 2 hours after the plane landed but mostly we were all in good spirits. Seeing bags lined up in the baggage area with dates going back 3 weeks prior was a worrying experience.
It was lovely to be catching up with Rohan’s family after 4 months and in Rome which is amazing it itself. But it was hot, busy, dusty and we were just not mentally prepared for it. The Colosseum was great to do first thing in the morning before the crowds, especially when we already had our ticket so there was zero waiting. The Vatican Museums we hit in the afternoon again with no crowds, and we were ever so grateful to do so by ourselves while the grandparents looked after the kids.
We hired a car to head from Rome to Tuscany, about 3 hours drive north. Left hand driving on the right side of the road must be incredibly stressful. I do not help the situation by yelling “you’re too far over my side” every 5 minutes, luckily Rohan is very patient and says kindly “maybe it would be easier if you just shut your eyes?”
Tuscany was the setting for Rohan’s sister Sarah’s wedding. Amelie had been counting down the day for months since she discovered she would be a flower girl. She did her job brilliantly and then danced the night away with just about every person on the dance floor. It was fantastic to catch up with Rohan’s family, both immediate and extended, after such a long time by ourselves.
We now sit relaxing in our new place on the French Riviera, after a quick last minute stopover in Vallebona on the Italian Coast. I am nursing some very sore broken toes and was keen to find somewhere to rest until I can walk properly again. On our last night in Tuscany I kicked our suitcase and sent my toes into angles they should not go in ever. Screaming and swearing quietly so you don’t wake your children up is very difficult with broken toes but achievable as I found out that night.